How to Become a Fashion Marketing Director: Career Roadmap

Explore the requirements to become a fashion marketing director. Learn about the job description and duties and the step-by-step process that can help you start a career as a fashion marketing director.

Should I Become a Fashion Marketing Director?

Fashion marketing directors help create promotions and advertisements that are geared towards informing and attracting consumers to a company's fashion services and products. By estimating the demand for various fashion products, a fashion marketing director is able to create a marketing strategy to maximize sales.

This is an upper-level position that typically requires candidates to have several years' worth of experience. Fashion marketing directors work with top executives to develop marketing strategies and are often required to put in overtime hours or travel when necessary. The job can be stressful, but pays salaries that are much higher than average, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Career Requirements

Degree Level Bachelor's degree required; master's degree preferred by some employers
Degree Field Marketing or closely related field
Experience Varies by position and employer, but can include 3-5 years of professional experience
Key Skills Marketing, management, critical thinking, judgment, decision-making, analytical and reasoning abilities, familiarity with industry-specific software, such as those used for customer relationship management (CRM) and data base query software
Salary (2014) $127,130 yearly (median for all marketing managers)

Sources: Job postings from employers (November 2012), O*NET Online

Step 1: Attain a Bachelor's Degree

Fashion marketing directors need to have at least a bachelor's degree. Based on online job postings from November 2012, employers sought applicants with a 4-year degree in marketing or a related subject as well as several years of relevant work experience and exposure to the fashion industry.

Aspiring candidates may want to consider pursing a degree program in fashion marketing and management as preparation for entering the field. Examples of coursework at the bachelor's degree level are global marketing, retail management, advertising, fashion merchandising and product distribution.

Success Tip:

  • Complete an internship. Internships are recommended for fashion marketing directors. These experiences allow a prospective fashion marketing director to see what the industry is like at the entry-level.

Step 2: Gain Work Experience

Students can acquire some relevant work experience through an entry-level position in fashion, such as an assistant buyer or a sales associate, or marketing. Potential fashion marketing directors with this initial experience can apply it towards mid-level positions as they advance their career. Additionally, work contacts may be established that can lead to full-time careers.

Step 3: Consider a Master's Degree

Some employers may prefer that applicants have a master's degree. A Master in Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in marketing is one option to consider. Many schools also offer programs in fashion marketing and management. These majors can provide an excellent combination of business and fashion experience. A fashion marketing director graduating from one of these programs understands how to properly market products or services in the fashion industry.

Step 4: Pursue Advancement Opportunities

Promotions in a company are usually obtained through experience, demonstrated leadership and top-notch skills. Many employers have management training programs that prospective fashion marketing directors can pursue. Fashion companies also encourage employees to pursue continuing education. It is important to remain current and up-to-date on trends in the fashion world. Fashion styles can change quickly, and fashion marketing directors have to keep up on them to ensure that their company is marketing the latest styles and designs.

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